Worm that Walks Variant (3.5e Race)

From Dungeons and Dragons Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Author: Kassupernova (talk)
Date Created: April 13, 2018
Status: Complete.
Editing: Clarity edits only please
Rate this article
Discuss this article

Worm that Walks Variant[edit]


Unlike other Worms that Walk, the Hosts of these (had they had sentience) retain their sentience and personalities. Some Worms that possessed powerful mages in the past may now possess their own hive mind and communicate with other beings telepathically; allowing them to occupy inanimate objects. In any case, self-preservation, self-interest and Hive expansion are almost always at the top of the list. The Host and Hive may share a co-dependent sentient link. They can communicate telepathically with each other, even when separated. Hosts may be driven to madness by their Worms.

Physical Description[edit]

This depends on the Host- the occupied object or being. In the rarest of cases, the Worms' Hive was inside of a body- in a Bag of Holding- in a stuffed animal- in a suit of armor. If one pays close attention they can occasionally spot a worm or two briefly slithering under the Host's skin before fading into deeper tissue. The Host's skin has various shiny silver lines where the worms have patched and stitched wounds with their silk. The worms rarely exit the Host, remaining under the surface unless it is damaged, revealing them. If the Host cannot be moved from the inside, they will exit to carry it.


Reviled by most anything, they typically do not "open up".


These Worms that Walk, unlike others, have the hosts mostly in control. They can be of any alignment of the host. Worms that possess objects may lean more towards Neutral or Evil, but can also be more influenced by past hosts.


Generally depends on the host, but the host must have been somewhere they could be exposed to such a large number of worms. This could have been a traveler that was killed in a swamp, a mage murdered in a back alley, a stuffed animal in a sewer or even an object cursed by a powerful mage.


Host: Varies, Worms: None


Same as the host.

Secondary Languages[edit]

Same as the host.


The Host refers to themselves normally but may also refer to the Worms. The Host will say "we" when referring to both. Worms without a sentient host will refer to themselves as "we" or whatever name other party member's can come up with (that the worms agree to).

Racial Traits[edit]

  • +2 Constitution
  • Host's (Aberration
  • Worm that Walks Variant base land speed is the same as the host (or 20, whichever is higher, allowing the Worms to carry it) on their feet.  
  • Darkvision: A worm that walks variant can see in the dark up to 60 feet. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight, and a worm that walks variant can function just fine with no light at all. 
  • +2 Insight bonus to AC 
  • Engulf (Ex): A Worm that Walks can choose to engulf an opponent who is no more than one size category larger than itself. The Worm attempts to embrace its victim, and with a successful melee touch attack, the victim is immediately swallowed up and surrounded by a mass of vermin, taking Swarm Damage for each swarm inside the Host and/or Hive as the Worm Swarm nibbles away. A victim who spends a full-round action can break free of the embrace and move up to half its speed away from the worm if desired, but can do nothing else. Otherwise, each round a victim remains embraced, it takes continuous Damage. Constructs are immune to this attack (unless the Worms are termites or diminutive rust monsters). Each Swarm does individual damage but the Swarms are treated as a whole for AC and health. The Host is given full cover from the target and is immobile as long as the target is Engulfed. The Swarms and Host can still regenerate while using Engulf. 
  • Frightful Presence (Su): When a Worm that Walks engulfs a victim, witnesses must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 the worm’s HD + the Worm’s Cha modifier). Those who make the save are shaken. Those who fail by 5 or fewer points are frightened. Those who fail by 6 to 10 points are panicked. Those who fail by 11 or more points are cowering. All these conditions last for 1d4 rounds. Those who have seen a worm use this attack before gain a +5 bonus on their saving throws. This may also apply to party members, who get an additional +5 bonus. The victim of the worm’s engulf attack has a –5 penalty on his or her saving throw. A Host always has -5 penalty to this saving throw and upon failure is instead afflicted with Madness and rolls 1d20, 1-5 are Short-Term Madness, 6-10 are Indefinite Madness and 11-20 are Long-Term Madness. You then roll 1d100 for the specific Madness. A lesser restoration spell can rid the Host of a short-­term or long-­term madness. A greater restoration spell or more powerful magic is required to rid the Host of indefinite madness. 
  • Discorporate (Ex): If gravely threatened, a Worm can Discorporate as a free action, simply falling into a pile of individual Vermin Swarms. So long as any of the component vermin survive, they can breed and create a new body to house the host’s intelligence and personality. Discorporating is a dangerous tactic, because once separated, the Worms are treated no differently than other Vermin Swarms. Also, the Worm stands a good chance of losing all its equipment. However, Discorporation almost assures that at least one maggot (if not dozens) will manage to crawl away, and so provide for the Worm’s continued existence. 
  • Regeneration (Ex): Fire and Acid deal lethal damage to a Worm, which cannot be regenerated. Damage dealt to the Worm is treated as nonlethal damage. The Worm automatically heals 1 nonlethal damage per round. A regenerating creature that has been rendered unconscious through nonlethal damage can be killed with a Fire or Acid coup de grace. A Worm that loses a limb or body part can reattach it by holding the severed member to the stump. Reattachment takes 1 minute. If the head or some other vital organ is severed, it must be reattached within 10 minutes or the creature dies. A Worm cannot regrow lost body parts but can bring a Host back from death within 10 minutes as long as at least 1 vermin swarm is alive. Attack forms that don’t deal hit point damage ignore regeneration. Regeneration also does not restore hit points lost from starvation, thirst, or suffocation. Severed parts that are not reattached wither and die normally. The Hive can regenerate swarm HP if they're in the Hive itself. A Swarm is required in the Host or Hive for the Host to regenerate. Swarms cannot regenerate outside of the hive. Each Swarm in the Hive and the Host each regenerate 1 damage per turn. 
  • You are eating for two. Each day you must consume 1 ration for the Host + 1/HD ration per day for the Worms or suffer Starvation penalties at twice the normal rate. Optionally, the Worms may instead consume part of a corpse equal to 1 HD per HD of Worms. 
  • Worm Swarms can be a single entity taking up a 10ft radius with pooled hitpoints and attack damage in relation to the Host's HD. Alternatively, The Worms could be separated with HD divided between any number of swarms. The Host and Worms maintain telepathic link at any distance. A swarm can last for 3 days without returning to its hive as long as it consumes its daily food. On the 4th day, the swarm is compelled to make its way to the hive. If it cannot return by the 5th day, the swarm dies. The hive must regenerate 1d8 of Worms before the swarm can be used again. The Hive has a maximum capacity in correlation with the Host's HD and it keeps vacancies for Worms that leave until they can no longer return.

In example: You have 3HD, you can create up to 3 swarms. You may roll 1HD, this is one swarms HP and it is ready to go on a scout mission. For 5 in-game days the host can only use the remaining 2HD worth of swarms for Engulf or Discorporate. If the scouting swarm dies at any point before returning, the hive uses the Regenerate ability to replace the worms. 

  • Pick a location inside of the Host for your hive. The hive is the true weakpoint to the Worm that Walks Variant. This hive works like a Bag of Holding specifically for your unused, sleeping and/or regenerating swarms. If the hive is destroyed, a single swarm and a full day's action are required to build a new hive. If the Host is completely destroyed beyond repair or otherwise lost forever, the swarm may make a new hive and create a new Host, while retaining most of the original Host's personality. The physical traits are now that of the new Host but HD and Character levels stay the same. This action requires a new corpse or object, and a full day's action uninterupted. If the hive is destroyed or unable to produce new worms without being supplied with food from swarms, the Host is dead or destroyed and all swarms are dead, the character is officially considered dead for all intents and purposes. It is at the DM's discretion whether or not True Resurrection brings the Host, Hive and Worms back. Ideally, Mend the Hive and cast resurrection on the Host and again on a swarm of Worms. 
  • Alertness: Worms that Walk get a +2 bonus on all Listen checks and Spot checks. 
  • Distraction (Ex): Any living creature vulnerable to a Swarm’s damage that begins its turn with a Swarm in its square is Nauseated for 1 round; a Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 Swarm’s HD + Swarm’s Con modifier) negates the effect. Spellcasting or concentrating on spells within the area of a Swarm requires a Concentration check (DC 20 + spell level). Using skills that involve patience and concentration requires a DC 20 Concentration check. 
  • Swarms do not threaten creatures in their square, and do not make attacks of opportunity with their swarm attack. 
  • Hive Mind (Ex): Any Swarm with at least 1 hit point per Hit Die forms a hive mind, giving it an Intelligence of 6. When a Swarm is reduced below this hit point threshold, it becomes mindless
  • Inhabit (Ex): A Swarm with 8 or more HD can enter the body of a helpless or dead creature by crawling into its mouth and other orifices. Inhabiting requires 1 minute, and the victim must be Small, Medium, or Large (although four swarms working together can inhabit a Huge creature). The Swarm can abandon the body at any time, although doing this takes 1 full round. Any attack against the victim deals half damage to the Swarm as well.

If a Swarm inhabits a dead body, it can restore animation to the creature and control its movements, effectively transforming it into a zombie of the appropriate size for as long as the Swarm remains inside. The Worms quickly consume a living victim, dealing 2d4 points of Constitution damage per hour they inhabit a body. A body reduced to Constitution 0 is dead.

A Worm-inhabited creature is relatively easy to spot, since its skin crawls with the forms of insects inside. The Swarm is intelligent enough to attempt to hide beneath loose clothing or a large cloak to keep its presence from being detected. The Swarm can attempt a Disguise check to conceal its inhabitation of a victim, with a –4 penalty if currently inhabiting a Small creature.

A remove disease or heal spell cast on an inhabited victim forces the Swarm to abandon its body. 

[Please note that Maggot Swarm's ability descriptions have been altered to be a standalone monster and should be used as shown on this race page. Worm that Walks Variant swarms do not possess telepathy to communicate with other creatures, etc.]

Vital Statistics[edit]

Table: Worm that Walks Variant Random Starting Ages
Adulthood Simple Moderate Complex
25 years +2d10 +2d20 +3d20
Table: Worm that Walks Variant Aging Effects
Middle Age1 Old2 Venerable3 Maximum Age
35 years 55 years 75 years +105 years
  1. At middle age, −1 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  2. At old age, −2 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  3. At venerable age, −3 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
Table: Worm that Walks Variant Random Height and Weight
Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male Host's +Host's Host's lb. × (Host's) lb.
Female Host's +Host's Host's lb. × (Host's) lb.

Back to Main Page3.5e HomebrewRaces

AuthorKassupernova +
Effective Character Level4 +
Favored ClassSame as the Host's +
Identifier3.5e Race +
Level Adjustment3 +
Racial Ability Adjustments+2 Constitution +
RatingUnrated +
SubtypeAberration +
SummaryA corpse, suit of armor or stuffed animal-
A corpse, suit of armor or stuffed animal- nearly anything could contain this Swarm of magical maggots and their Hive. A Hive that is enchanted similarly to a bag of holding; the Host may contain more Worms than you'd expect. Do you want to play as a dresser carried by a swarm of maggots? Because it's possible...
swarm of maggots? Because it's possible... +
TitleWorm that Walks Variant +
TypeHost's +